The Bank Job

TheBankJobSuggested by Brad Nelson • The truth of London’s infamous Baker Street bank robbery in September of 1971 is revealed for the first time in this gritty crime thriller. After a government gag order was issued to protect a member of the royal family, the robbery slipped into historical oblivion.
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4 Responses to The Bank Job

  1. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    I’m not a fan of Jason Statham. I think he’s dull, non-charismatic, and he mumbles a lot. Most of his movies are just mindless pap action films geared toward twenty- or thirty-somethings who have the brain of a 13-year-old stuck inside. As long as something is jiggling on the screen or exploding, the viewer is happy.

    However, if you like you bank heist films, this one is above average. Statham is approached by the beautiful Martine Love (Saffron Burrows) to pull a can’t-miss bank job: The alarms will be off as the bank undergoes an upgrade. But does she have ulterior motives? Why offer the job to Statham who hasn’t done this kind of work before?

    Statham assembles a crew and gets to work.

    Three plots (at least) intertwine on this bank job which is based (however loosely) on real events. Despite the various plot lines, the film does not make the mistake of being overly ambitious. You can actually follow this plot without a hand-held calculator.

    It’s a nice cast with believable characters (for an action film) and a fairly good story. More action films should be this smart. It’s a bit understated so might not appeal to the sugar-rush crowd.

  2. Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

    This could easily turn into a discussion of the best heist movies ever, which would be a horrible thing, this being the internet and all.

    But I saw mentioned in an thread about The Bank Job another bank-job movie: The Day They Robbed the Bank of England. So I watched that last night.

    To those for whom an action movie means The Expendables, this may not be your cup of tea. This movie is not little more than a string of car chases, blood spatter, explosions, and camera-shakes. It has an old black-and-white charm where the flaws (such as co-robber, Kieron Moore, who makes the idea of a loose cannon seem tied-down) add to the fun.

    Harry-chested Aldo Ray plays the American connection, a specialist in tunneling. Don’t even ask yourself why they couldn’t do some of the tunneling on one Saturday/Sunday and then finish it on the next and instead try to manically cram it all in over a three-day bank holiday. Clearly although they are clever in planning the job, the actual tunneling work was not something they practiced well.

    Peter O’Toole plays one of Her Majesty’s special guards (the guys with the tall black fuzzy hats). Aldo Ray, looking for inside information, strikes up a friendship with O’Toole, playing the part of the innocent businessman with an interest in architecture. The build-up of this movie is said to be slow, but I thought it was just fine. It’s fun seeing O’Toole in his younger years. This is a couple of years before Lawrence of Arabia.

    There’s a throw-away love interest. But what good would an old black-and-white movie be without it? No doubt a modern remake of this would be a little more exciting. But I doubt they could replicate this cast of characters (good and bad). But it’s certainly a movie that, even it its own time, would have benefited from a few more dollars thrown at production values. But them were the days.

    Of course they don’t get away with the gold. In these types of movies, they rarely do. This was never in doubt. It’s considered a small victory if they’re not all killed as the heist falls apart. But had they not been so greedy, they may well have walked away with a few bars of Her Majesty’s gold.

    And, no, don’t look too closely when one of the robbers is inside the vault and has a large bar of gold in each hand that he waves around as if he was carrying a loaf of bread. It’s my understanding that it would take two hands and concerted effort just to carry one bar of gold. But realism costs money, I guess.

    • Timothy Lane says:

      I wonder where you would rate the Peter Sellers comedy-heist moive After the Fox in such a list.

      • Brad Nelson Brad Nelson says:

        Oh…geez…a Victor Mature film. One of my least favorite actors…paired with one of my favorites — Sellers. I’m going to have to see if I can find that one.

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